I came home from a recent trip to the Washington DC area with several hundred photos and videos. Two hundred of them were from a visit to the National Arboretum. The most impressive part of the arboretum is the old capitol columns that are set on a hill surrounded by a natural area. I only needed 10 photos and one minute and 45 seconds to create a video slide show that shares the experience of my visit to this unique site.
The images follow my path towards the columns, through the columns and then away from the columns. The pace of the show and the choice of music lends to the feeling of grandeur. The ending brings you back to earth and to the setting that anchors and surrounds the columns with natural beauty. Watch Capitol Columns on YouTube.
You view the columns from afar as you approach on the walkway. They look like something leftover from a Greek Parthenon, not something that is in the middle of the DC metro area. Entering the "room" that is enclosed by the columns, you can't help but look up to the decorated tops of the columns and to the sky. You cannot walk and look up at the same time. The floor of this outdoor room is made with paving stones that have gaps between them. It seems as if the design forces visitors to stop in order to look up because to walk across the paving stones requires that your gaze goes to where your feet are stepping.
The natural area around the columns contributes to the feeling that the columns are the ruins of some ancient culture. Once there may have been important people coming and going between the columns but now it is a place that is not forgotten but transformed by its setting. Where once there was the noise and activity of government, now there is the noise and activity of bees.